Celebrity Buddies Gone Bust
From friends to frenemies, therapists explain why famous friends fell out.
From friends to frenemies, it happens oh-so often in Hollywood (and in real-life). But, for A-listers, perhaps the pressures of high-profile careers are just enough to strain a relationship to the breaking point. Outside pressures aside, when friends become enemies, experts say, it could be their own egos at fault.
According to New York-based marriage and family therapist Dr. Paul Hokemeyer, "Celebrities need attention and external validation to feed their insatiable narcissism. Their narcissism in turn consumes them with self-obsession-qualities that destroy relationships and provoke hostility from others," he says. "When two narcissistic celebrities enter into a relationship with one another the results are toxic and explosive."
We profiled seven pairs of former besties to get to the bottom of the she-said/she-said and find out why these famous friends really fell out.
Madonna & Gwyneth Paltrow
and Gwyneth Paltrow bonded over British husbands and their mutual love of music. But these blonde buddies started making headlines when they reportedly stopped speaking to each other. But, that didn't stop Paltrow from dishing about her former friend when she asked readers on her website Goop what to do when you "don't like a friend" anymore.
After consoling Madge during her divorce from Guy Ritchie, Paltrow reportedly became angry with the singer after she dropped their mutual trainer and friend Tracy Anderson. Now, news reports have surfaced that Madonna has been 'banned' from their former close circle of famous friends such as Stella McCartney, Beyoncé and Kate Hudson altogether.
Licensed psychotherapist Brooke Miller thinks these two stars ended their friendship because they just didn't have enough in common anymore. "These women found each other while they were wearing similar hats in their family units and in their lives," Miller says. "But, after Madonna's divorce, they had less similar ground to stand on and just like in romantic relationships, some pairings work better when they have a lot in common."
Denise Richards & Heather Locklear
Thou shall not date their friend's ex-husband. It's the cardinal girlfriends rule, right? Apparently Denise Richards' friendship with Heather Locklear wasn't enough to keep the actress away from Richie Sambora.
"It's a universal women's code to never date a friend's ex, no matter how long the breakup has been," says Allison Pescosolido M.A. and co-founder of Divorce Detox™.
But according to Pescosolido's Divorce Detox partner, Andra Brosh, both women should have just put on their big girl panties and moved on. "It sounds like both women didn't handle things like adults. In order to repair the damage, they would need to have a conversation in which they both take accountability for their part and find forgiveness to move on."
In the end, neither girl got the guy, as Locklear quickly moved on with Jack Wagner (and later broke off the engagement) and Richards is raising her three daughters as a single mom (but was recently photographed at a party with Sambora).
Nicole Richie & Paris Hilton
They grew up together as celebrity kids and even filmed a reality show together. But the end of the Simple Life turned out to be the end of Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton's friendship, too. Miller believes this is a classic case of the woman who befriends the "underdog" essentially to make herself feel superior. And in this case, when Richie no longer was the underdog, Hilton couldn't handle it and moved on.
"Richie spent many years feeling insecure about who she was, what she looked like, and what kind of emotional space she wanted to take up in the world. Hilton hearts these types of girls. But when Nicole shifted from 'lost' girl to success story, the friendship faded," Miller says.
Paris Hilton & Kim Kardashian
While Paris Hilton seems to have a pattern of ditching childhood friends (see the aforementioned Nicole Richie), it could just be a matter of growing apart-or catty backstabbing. Case in point: Kim Kardashian. The two were inseparable until Hilton reportedly bashed Kardashian in the media.
"Friends don't make fun of other friends, especially in a public forum," Brosh says. "Sounds like these girls need to re-evaluate what a friend truly is."
Miller believes, when Kardashian stepped into the limelight after years of being known as 'Hilton's friend,' the two were 'competing' for public adoration, and that just became too much to bear. "Their identities are so deeply braided into the attention they receive from the public, that competing for said attention is like a true battling for their identity," Miller says.
Jennifer Aniston & Chelsea Handler
Actress Jennifer Aniston and comedian Chelsea Handler were an unlikely pairing from the start. So when the two went from attached-at-the-hip to at-odds, few were surprised. The falling out reportedly happened after Handler publicly bashed Aniston's ex Brad Pitt and his new love, Angelina Jolie-based on Aniston's own personal discussions with the talk show host.
"It's always important to be careful about who you complain to about an ex," Brosh says. "Some friends will want to take sides and bad mouth the ex or new partner to show support. While it was well-intentioned, this can backfire as it did here."
Brosh says Aniston may have forgiven Handler (the two were recently photographed with their arms around each other at an award's ceremony) for her indiscretions but should always remember Handler's not the person to spill secrets to.
Kim Cattrall & Sarah Jessica Parker
When it comes to an ensemble cast, Hollywood has a long history of feuding over who makes more money or gets more privileges. Such was the case between Kim Cattrall and Sarah Jessica Parker, as reported by many media outlets, when the two were co-stars on the popular series-turned-screenplay Sex and the City.
"Envy can get ugly" Brosh says. While the two repeatedly denied rumors of a feud, reports surfaced of on-set arguments, co-stars taking sides, and Cattrall demanding the same paycheck as co-executive producer Parker-an on/off again friendship that could rival the back and forth of Carrie Bradshaw and Mr. Big.
"Sure, there is probably some discord between them, but it's probably as simple as jealousy for each others strengths, which seem to be very different for both of them, or just not always being on the same page," Miller says. "But just because they aren't best friends, doesn't mean they hate each other. Whatever their relationship is, they sure keep the truth under wraps well," she adds.
Jennifer Lopez & Eva Longoria
Bring two fiery Latin superstars together, both with strong personalities, and it's a recipe for a diva-disaster-especially when one said superstar gets a little too friendly with the other's hubby. Jennifer Lopez and Eva Longoria were reportedly friends, until 2008, when photos surfaced of Longoria sitting on the lap of Lopez' now estranged husband Marc Anthony. Longoria was also married at the time.
"Having friends of the opposite sex in a marriage is fine until it becomes inappropriate. Eva and Marc crossed the line," Brosh says.
Things really heated up earlier this year when Anthony and Lopez announced a split, and Longoria provided a consoling shoulder for Anthony to cry on. Lopez was angry, and rightfully so, Pescosolido says. "[Longoria and Anthony] broke an important rule: sharing intimate marriage details is off-limits in friendships between men and women," Pescosolido says. Reps for both deny any discussions about Lopez and Anthony's marriage.